Instructions how to get the whole row seat.
Updated: Jun 5
The whole row seat, the holy grail of economy class travel, the gold at rainbow's end especially on long haul flights. It's a 180 degrees flat bed, two tables and one or two desks and I am ready to tell you how to significantly increase your chances of getting it.
Before I say thing please keep in mind that (Business Class readers are reading this while thinking on their flat-bed seats :) your Economy class compartment might have different fares (Premium Economy, Economy plus, Comfort or whatever name they put on that) in that case the crew would consider an offense the fact that you've moved to a different fare seat, to solve this problem mind the following.
Stay away from stickers like this, give a two row margin to your nearest emergency exit, the best bet is to pick a seat at the back of the plane having in mind that airlines fill it up from the front to the back and most probably you'll have more space around the last seats. First of all this is my winner thought 'If your airline has an app and there is a seat map showing the occupied seats; that would be the most accurate map solution' this being said you can check seatguru.com just to have a seat map idea and to avoid different fare seats in your compartment.
Please have in mind that instead of paying extra to pick your seat in advance or waiting for a free seat assignment at the check in counter; you can always ask for a seat change at the gate.
An app called Seat Alerts by expertflyer.com can show the seat map in real time up to two hours before departure from where you can get a picture of your flight's passenger distribution, please be aware that most of the flights close one hour before departure following some waiting list and staff seat assignments (those seats will most probably be assigned complying also with the 'front to back' order)
Now the world's most naive question: what if I board last and then I just seat at the whole row seat that I see available at the back of the plane? well my answer to that question would be that I've seen people boarding last to jump into the lavatory while waiting for the passengers to seat down and then come out to pick whatever seat is left.
After everyone is seated there is no more seat change allowed until after the take off when the seat belt sign comes off, most of the time if you kindly ask the crew to change to a whole row that is available near your seat and it's pretty obvious that boarding is completed you'll get nice permissions to legally and rightfully move to your new bed in the air.
Last but not least remember that your new bed seat might have access to both aisles and it makes it easy for any passenger to jump into one of your seats so as soon as you get it mark your territory! and definitely if you get a window whole row seat don't take the window but instead take the aisle and guarantee no access to your new three or four seats personal space.